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Steve Bruce disagrees with Roy Keane on Sir Alex Ferguson’s handling of Man United exit



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Steve Bruce has revealed he regrets how he left Manchester United and disagrees with Roy Keane about how Sir Alex Ferguson handled the situation.

Steve Bruce, 63, captained United to the first-ever Premier League title in the competition’s debut 1992/93 season and amassed over 400 appearances for the Reds as he was an ever presence in Sir Alex Ferguson’s from 1987 till his departure in 1996.

Bruce’s exit from Old Trafford is a sore subject for some, in particular Roy Keane, as they believe that he didn’t get the sendoff that his time and impact at the club deserved.

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The defender was not included in Ferguson’s team for the 1996 FA Cup final against Liverpool where a goal from Eric Cantona saw United win 1-0. A few days later Bruce was sold to Birmingham City.

In his usual fiery manner, this incensed Keane, who later recalled to Off The Ball his dislike of how Bruce and fellow United icon Bryan Robson left the club, saying:

“I was at the club when Bryan Robson left, I was at the club when Steve Bruce left, two brilliant servants for Man United and I didn’t like the way they were treated at the end.

“People talk about Ferguson’s man management, don’t be kidded on by all of it. Ferguson came out of it after and said he always did what was best for Manchester United – nonsense!”

However, although the 63-year-old doesn’t look back upon his exit from the Red Devils with the fondest memories, speaking on talkSPORT, he disagrees with his former teammate and says that Ferguson made the right decision.

“The one regret in all my time was leaving Man United, I left in a bit of a huff because I didn’t get picked for the cup final. It was Sir Alex’s way of easing me out the door. Looking back on it now, I hated it at the time, but I fully understand it.

“I was 36, I wasn’t injured and didn’t get back in the team for the cup when I thought I should have. I left within two or three days, but can fully understand it from afar now.

“I didn’t want to sit on the bench or be a squad player any more. I made that pretty clear to the manager himself. I left within two or three days and I left under a bit of a cloud.

“My contract had finished, but that took me over the edge that I didn’t play in the 1996 Cup final. Man United won 1-0 and Eric Cantona scored in the last minute, nobody gives a stuff if I played in it. Man United won.

“The manager made the right call and had done the same thing with Bryan Robson a few years before that. It was his way of telling you quietly that your time was up.”

Perhaps this shows one of Sir Alex Ferguson’s greatest qualities: Under his tenure, United very rarely got caught up in transfer sages.

This now seems to be a bygone era of the club as almost every transfer target becomes long-winded with the end result of the Reds paying over the odds. This is something that Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS want to change so it’s going to be interesting to see what happens in the summer transfer window.